Q: My husband and I are finally remodeling our 1970s bathroom since we plan to age in place in our present home. Since this will be our final remodel, we would like the latest in bathroom technology. The main focus will be on removing our tub to install a custom walk-in shower stall. What futuristic features do you recommend for this shower?
Kate, Rhode Island
A: With custom shower installations, I recommend paying special attention to the mixing valve. If you want “futuristic features,” look into an electronic shower mixing valve. Electronic mixing or digital mixing valves can give you more shower options and can be easier to operate than manual hand-turning valves. You mentioned aging in place; when you’re older, it can be a lot easier to turn the shower on and off with just the press of a button.
A nice option with a digital mixing valve is the ability to add a second control unit to the shower. You can have your main control in the shower stall, and a second control outside the shower.
Bottom line: If you’re looking to go high-tech, go bath to the future with a digital shower valve.
Master contractor and plumber Ed Del Grande is the author of the book “Ed Del Grande’s House Call” and the host of TV and Internet shows. Visit eddelgrande.com or write firstname.lastname@example.org.